How to Play a Paradiddle

The paradiddle is one of the most popular rudiments for drummers to learn. It is one of the top 5 rudiments every drummer should practice regularly. The paradiddle works you independence and stick control the most. Learn how to play a paradiddle on a practice pad, the learn how to play the paradiddle around the drum set. There are literally thousands of different patterns, fills, and solos you can play with the paradiddle, so make sure you not only practice it, but you master it as well. That being said, let’s learn the paradiddle rudiment.

jeff queen The paradiddle is a little tougher rudiment then like the single stroke roll, flam stroke, or double stroke roll; however once you learn it, the paradiddle becomes very easy to play. The pattern is an 8 stroke pattern; meaning it takes 8 hits before the paradiddle will repeat itself. Here is the sticking for the paradiddle:


There is a number of ways to perform this sticking pattern. For example, you can incorporate the Moeller Method into this rudiment by using the bounce from your full stroke and controlling the taps. This takes a little bit of practice; however this is the most effective way to play the paradiddle.

Start out by practicing the paradiddle on the practice pad at first. This is the starting point to all rudiment work. Remember to always use a metronome so you make sure you do not go off time. Here is the paradiddle on paper:

single paradiddle

When you have this practiced up, you can try moving the paradiddle around the drum set. Here is a quick drum beat you can play using the paradiddle pattern. You will notice the bass drum and the left hand on the snare make up the paradiddle. Your hi hat hand is keeping your time. Try this rock beat out:

single paradiddle

Like I said above, the paradiddle is one of the top 5 drum rudiments you should practice. It is great for warming up for a show, or for working on your stick independence and control. Make sure you can fully master this pattern well. From here, you can learn some killer jazz grooves, and move up to the double paradiddle

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